tv [untitled] August 22, 2012 8:30pm-9:00pm PDT
to the chinese chamber of commerce. thank you, chinese chamber of commerce. [applause] a big thank you to the community for better parks and recreation in chinatown for your help and assistance with the facility. let's go, keep it up. [applause] last but certainly not least, and i know you saved your biggest, strongest round of applause for this special group of people, the hardest working staffers in city government, the recreation and park department. i want to start with our capital division. planning director don and our project manager who built this thing. [applause]
i want to thank jimmy, our former facility coordinator here. he has got a great jump shot. [applause] our rec staff, harry, serene, jennifer, the new facility coordinator here. [applause] michelle, richard, kerry, recreation supervisor. jerry, our parks services manager. marianne. and our custodian supervisor, cliff, who is going to help us keep this place clean. a big round of applause for them. [applause] and last but not least, a really warm round of applause. you all know her, the former area supervisor here and longtime advocate of this facility, elaine tom. where are you? [applause]
fantastic. >> all right, and this is actually going to be dramatic because here he comes. the man i am going to introduce is not moses, but he is close. the biggest supporter of parks and brachiate -- recreation and open space in this city. he understands the importance to our neighborhoods and communities of having clean and safe places to play. he has been an advocate for parks, open space, and recreation, even as director of the department of public works and as city administrator. the thing i love most about him is his youthful spirit and competitive fire.
this is the guy who is not just our mayor, but he is a ping-pong player. he loves to shoot hoops. he loves baseball. he is a big sports fan. he loves our kids. the thing i tried to model after him the most is the ability to play and to bring joy to the job. ladies and gentlemen, our mayor, edwin lee. [cheers and applause] >> first of all, thank you, everybody, for coming here and help us open the betty ann ong rec center. [applause] we're going to say that name a very, very often from here on. it is great opportunity. we were here just last september, putting in the final beam with the ong family and with so many of the community agencies, from the chamber to
associations, to the community youth center, the chinatown development center. and i remember, even the previous time when supervisor chu and i were right in this building -- supervisor chiu and i were right here in this building when fire victims needed a place to be. now we have a rec center that will also be the community emergency center, so that if there is any big event that ever happens that affects this community, they will have a seismically safe center for people to come in and get the services that they need. more than that on a daily basis -- and thanks to rec and park. thanks to the water for commission. thanks to the board of supervisors. i see scott and eric mar and david chiu behind me. we have embraced our parks bond and our whole capital planning to make sure that we put enough money and discipline into these
wonderful rec centers and these park attributes and so on. so very happy to share this moment with the president of the rec and park commission. mark buell is here with all the wonderful staff. the staff that dpw has been working with rec and park. by the way, on budget, below budget and on time -- are you kidding? wonderful. [applause] but, you know, the spirit of all this is really two areas. it is the celebration of our community, but it is also the reason why we all agreed to name this betty ann ong rec center. because it is part of the history of a hero coming from chinatown, san francisco. and i n you -- 9/11 is right around the corner.
while, as tragic as that event was for the whole country, we do have our heroes. we have people who stepped up and saved thousands of more lives. these are heroes to the country. so i began this really with a very personal thanks to harry and the whole ong family. kathy and mrs. ong are here as well. thank you for letting us celebrate a wonderful life in contribution to our own american history. the name here is not only embedded on the walls here, but we have that time capsule that we did in september so that in future generations, many people will hear about this name, hear about why it is important to remember the ong family and betty and her heroic efforts to save lives. but we also have generations of children of a family that will be here that will know the reason why we need this
important institution in our community after someone who sacrificed her life and was a hero to all of us. with that, if i may present to the ong family -- my personal privilege and on behalf of the whole city, the board, police department, community organizations, i would like to proclaim today, in recognition of this event, the center and the naming of it, betty ann ong chinese rec saturday in san francisco. [applause] -- betty ann ong chinese rec center day in san francisco. [applause] >> the mayor mentioned the time capsule. during the time capsule, the mayor actually challenged me to a little bit of a ping-pong when
the center finally opened. so i accept your challenge. [laughter] >> it is on like don teton -- donkey kong. [laughter] >> the spirit of this place is one of joy and one of play. i want to bring up the president of our board of supervisors, who just a couple weeks ago, we had the pleasure of hitting a few tennis balls together at the wong playground where we just redid a couple of tennis courts, and pretty good, president chiu. i want to think david chiu for his leadership and incredible support of our department and his love of play. ladies and gentlemen, supervisor david chiu. >> the sun is shining and the community today. who is excited about the opening of the chinese rec center? [applause] i want to thank all of you for being part of this celebration of our communities history, our
present and our future. 1951, 60 years ago from our first kids began playing in the chinese rec center. they became adults and had children themselves. they have become grandparents and have had grandchildren who will play in this facility. and i am also so heartened to be here with all of you to celebrate the history and the memory of betty ann ong. to the ong family, you and betty will be symbols of for us for the rest of our time on what it means to be a heroine. we are here to celebrate our president. wasn't just a few years ago that this entire community came together with the leadership of ccdc and a.n.d. and our rec and park advocates and the parks alliance to push for a bond measure in 2008 that led us to this project. i also want to mention, on tuesday, three days from now,
the board of supervisors is going to put another rec and park bond measure on the november ballot to make sure we continue to rebuild a new parks and playgrounds, including the willie wu wu wong playground were phil ginsburg and i just played a little bit of tennis. [applause] a dubai could just say for the future with this building is for -- and if i could just say for the future what this building is for. if you look around, there are not just hundreds of adults here. we see kids. we see lots of kids. i know that there are children among us and young people among us will be our next leaders here in san francisco. they will follow scott wiener, eric mar, and myself and the board of supervisors. hopefully someday they will follow major lee has the next mayor of this city. and, as a basketball fan, i hope they also followed jeremy lin in being able to play for the
future san francisco warriors. [applause] so thank you for being a part of our history. thank you for being a part of our present. thank you for being part of our future. thank you for being part of san francisco. [applause] >> thank you, david. david mentioned the 2008 and the 2012 park bonds but those are a creature of the city's 10-year capital plan. i want to recognize the leader of that effort, our city administrator naomi kelly. thank you for all of your support. [applause] supervisor eric mar was elected in november 2008 to represent the district 1, the richmond district. for over two decades, he has been a dedicated and response of advocate for working families, youth, seniors, small businesses, and all the diverse residents of the richmond district in san francisco. eric and i have had a great pleasure of working very closely together in golden gate park on a number of issues. i want to thank you for all of your tireless efforts on behalf
of kids, families, and parks. it isn't uncommon, eric mar. >> thank you, everyone. this is an incredible new rec center. it has been 50 years since it has been built, but it has been a 10-year struggle of the community. many of the people that are here to advocate with tremendous assistance to all wanted to thank the ong family for their support. also the rec and park department, dpw, and everyone is here. asian and neighborhoods and design, and many community groups have been key in supporting this. 20 years ago, over 20 years ago, when i could still run and jump the time, i used to play here regularly. i was an aspiring point guard on the basketball court. but i am so happy that new generations of young kids i can see back here will be the ones to benefit generations to come. also, mr. ginsberg mention the rec and park bond on the november ballot. we need to support that so that we have beautiful rec centers
and play fields for everyone throughout the city, because it is an important part of making the city livable -- lovable and healthy for everyone. thank you for being here, everyone. i am proud to be here with you. [applause] >> the center on the board of supervisors basketball team and the greatest -- and the supervisor who has not missed a park and recreation opening because of his commitment to youth, families, and to open space, scott wiener. [applause] >> thank you, phil. you know, we have a lot of different neighborhoods in this city that are so different from one another in a lot of ways, and sometimes rugged broken down into this neighborhood, that neighborhood. but as we go around the city, the one thing that is exactly the same in every single neighborhood is that people
want rec centers. they want public space. the what libraries. the one great parks. we all want a sense of community and being able to be with other people in our community. and that is the same everywhere. so this is incredibly exciting. what is also exciting is that in this era of all the mess in washington and sacramento and parts of the state where rec centers and libraries and state parks are closing down, we are actually rebuilding our rec centers and our libraries. we are refurbishing our parks. we are expanded the hours. we're making it better and better for our citizens, and that speaks the world of san francisco's commitment to our park system, our anger centers, and to our libraries. it makes it a very exciting time to be in san francisco. congratulations to everyone. [applause] >> thank you, scott. recreation and park commission president mark buell has been a
true leader on key part issues that affect our parks across the city. his leadership, his vision, his steadiness, his stability has helped revitalize the recreation and park department. ladies and gentlemen, mark buell. [applause] >> thank you. i will be brief. but there is an old saying that victory has many parents and defeat is an orphan. and the many parents of this victory are here today. the mayor of the board of supervisors, the department, but none more so than the people standing up in the audience, the people who supported this by supporting the 2008 bond measure that made this possible. and these cannot happen overnight, so give yourself an applause for that. [applause] rose reminded me earlier today that this renovation got started 10 years ago, so things do not happen fast, but they do happen. let me tell you the the point of pride that i think this community should have. this is the largest single
investment in a recreation center in all of san francisco and it is here in chinatown. so give yourself another hand for that. [applause] with that, i want to close and say that i think the staff and the department, operating in an era of reduced budgets in greater demand, is doing a better job than ever, and want to tip my hat to phil ginsburg and the entire staff for what they have done to make this happen. thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you, boss. mohammed nuru has been a longtime friend of our department. this is, after all, am public works, o angeles -- public works. mo and his staff have been incredible in building. thank you for prioritizing parks. mohammed nuru. [applause] >> thank you very much. thank you, everyone from ever coming out today.
on behalf of the department of public works, and want to thank the recreation and park department for being a great partner with dpw. across the city, we have been able to work and recreation centers like this. chinatown, as you have heard, is one of the most dense neighborhoods in our country. so facilities like this are very, very important for us to provide. most importantly, what do think the architect and design team that worked very, very closely with the community, all the community groups, to make sure that the center and the correct activities are being designed as part of this project. especially. wong, stanly, michele, and farah. a big hand to them because there were the designers. [applause] i also want to think david, the construction manager of all the dpw staff and all the contractors to came here. on a project like this on the bottom of a slope with the cable
cars, there's a lot of activity. as you heard, we were able to deliver the product on time, on budget, but even better, below budget. again, we're working very hard together. lastly, you heard about all the art in the building. i want to point out this particular ceramic over here. orange, ground, and gray. those all locally-made in the bay area. by using locally-made products, where serbs -- supporting our economy in the bay area. thank you to mayor lee and his leadership in making sure we continue to support local businesses in many of our projects. thank you very much. congratulations. and i know there are many more projects to come. thank you. [applause] >> hollande to do a great shout out to the recreation park department two superintendents -- i want to do a shout out. one is in charge of parks, one recreation. they keep this facility clean,
safe, beautiful, and funding. ann and -- anna and bob. they're both here. [applause] last year, the mayor led the effort to rename the chinese recreation center in honor of one of the city's own and a national heroine. betty ann ong was a flight attendant on american airlines flight 11 on september 11, two thousand one. her quick-thinking and brave actions during the fight -- flight probably saved thousands of additional lives. harry ong, her brother, is here on behalf of ong family and their foundation which is been jitters and heartfelt in raising funds to furnish this new -- which has been so generous and heartfelt and raising funds to furnish this new recreation center. [applause] >> get afternoon, ladies and to win. thank you, phil ginsburg. the family thanks ed lee and the san francisco recreation park in
rec commission in naming this new wonderful and beautiful city facility the betty ann ong chinese recreation center. we also thank the people of the city and county of san francisco, the petition-signers, and everyone involved in urging that the center be named after betty. it is a tremendous privilege to the new center that it be named after betty, and our family does not taken lightly. in so doing, it is an honor and a tribute not only to betty and her legacy, but also for all the other victims and heroes who died on september 11. betty ann ong ann foundation would like to thank everyone for their generosity in supporting our fund-raising effort to fully equip the center. and now i would like to take these last few minutes to thank some very special people. i would like to thank and acknowledgement chiu, elaine,
and all the past directors and their ancillary for their tremendous dedication in serving the community of san francisco and to the new director. as our foundation has gone through our grass-roots fund- raising journey these past six months, we found that people are so giving if they believe in your cause. and in their support of betty's legacy and her heroism, people from everywhere have supported the people -- the betty ann ong foundation to raise funds for the center. we think. ong families -- we thank the ong family association and the other chinese benevolent associations. we think our relatives and friends. we think reverend norman and the ccdc. we grew up in the group.
the sacramento community, local and national businesses, my family at walgreen's, the san francisco-chinatown rotary club, and our partners, the san francisco parts alliance. we have received donations from individuals for large amounts and small amounts. and our foundation banks all of you in appreciation as equals. for those not able to donate money, our foundation thanks you just as much for your heart to's warm wishes and dots. also, i think all the flight crew members who are here today from near and far -- i thank all the flight crew members who were here today. [applause] i salute you. to honor and demoralize your fellow co-worker betty and to help celebrate this reopening, thank you for making our air
flight safe, and you are truly first responders. and ask all of you, when you fly, please do not give the group a headache. [laughter] last but not least, i thank all of the members of the betty ann ong recreation council for their dedication in helping to plan this wonderful reopening event. in closing, my family and i thank all of you, all of you, for being here today and celebrating this reopening event. enjoy this day with the music provided, and may god bless you. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, harry. the san francisco park alliance, formerly san francisco parks trust and neighborhood parks council, is a philanthropic and advocacy organization that supports our department. joining with the ong family foundation, the alliance's has
been distorting the gear up fund for equipment in newly renovated centers like this one. the theme here is we are a community. we cannot do it alone. and we're all partners. i want to bring up our partner representing the san francisco parks alliance. >> thank you. the park's alliances deeply honored to have been able to give and assist the family of betty ann ong in raising the funds that have paid for all of the equipment that is inside the speed of only building. the ping-pong tables, the basketballs, tables, chairs. all of the equipment was paid for through the private philanthropy that we have been able to raise. your tax dollars at work -- how many times do we hear that, and it is a little bit on the cynical side? take a look at this building. your tax dollars, my tax dollars, phil's taxes, the mayor's taxes, our taxes paid for this building. we all should die in.
every taxpayer in san francisco chipped in a little bit today for the beautiful new building -- we all should die in. what do you think and this use of our tax dollars -- we all chipped in appeared what you think about our tax dollars at work? [applause] we paid for this building through the 2008 parks bond. if you like this, just wait until what is coming in november. we have another parked bond measure, the green and safe neighborhood parks bond of 2012 that will be on your ballot this november. it is going to pay for more rec ce% neighborhoods all across the city. new swimming pools, new playgrounds, new trails, touching every neighborhood in san francisco. we're going to put $195 million to work improving our parks system city-wide. it will be the biggest single investment we make in our parks in a generation. vote for the parks bond is
november 6. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, matt. and most awesome plug. all right, give yourselves a hand. we're almost done. [applause] a brief acknowledgment before i bring up the man. a brief acknowledgment to my staff who actually a rate inched today's event. connie, elton, and sarah for your incredible work for organizing this event. thank you. [applause] to do the benediction, to wish us a little bit of love and a little bit of luck, the director of the chinatown community development center, a reverend and some who grew up playing here in chinese rec center, and i have seen him should. reverend norman fong knows what this center means to the committee. reverend fong might also have the most reverent -- or rather devaney reverend a rabbi no.
he is here to bless our new facility, but later today, he and his band, just jammin, will be performing here life for all of you. reverend fong. [cheers and applause] >> ok, everybody, everybody -- everybody, pay attention. i am not blessing this place to you, all of us are blessing this place. mayor lee. all of us. ong family. when i say everybody, then you say three words -- bless this center. let's try that. bless this center. here we go. maybe the spirit of peace and harmony -- everybody -- [all] bless this center. made the spirit of the joy and
happiness, everybody -- [all] + this center. made the struggle of learning and teamwork, everybody -- blessed this center. maybe courage and inspiration of betty ann ong -- everybody -- bless this center. maybe love and dedication of all the rec park staff, volunteers, directors, past and present, everybody -- bless this center. made the sound of laughter as well as the sweat of hard work, everybody -- bless this center. >in the spirit of community that poses all together -- bless this center. before i say amen, and now may god bless this center named the betty ann ong chinese recreation center, let's a all celebrate by, men.